November 28, 2017 / 9:10 AM / in a year

Japan government keeps view that moderate economic recovery continuing

TOKYO (Reuters) - The Japanese government stuck to its moderately upbeat view on the economy in November, its monthly economic report showed on Tuesday, saying it remained on a recovery path helped by consumer spending and business investment.

FILE PHOTO: A man walks past a factory at the Keihin industrial zone in Kawasaki, south of Tokyo, Japan, August 18, 2016. Picture taken on August 18, 2016. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon/File Photo

“Japan’s economy continues to recover moderately as a trend,” the Cabinet Office said in the report, maintaining that assessment for a sixth consecutive month.

The report is the first since the government announced this month that the economy had grown for a seventh straight quarter in July-September - its longest expansion in 16 years - although private consumption had suffered a rare decline.

But the government said in Tuesday’s report that private consumption was “picking up moderately”, unchanged from the wording it used last month, with the consumer confidence index hovering at four-year highs.

The government maintained its assessment that capital expenditure was “picking up”, supported by machinery orders and an increase in spending on construction work.

It also kept intact its view that exports and industrial output were “picking up” and were expected to continue doing so on the back of solid overseas demand.

The report comes ahead of a slew of October data due out this week that will provide an initial economic report card for the current quarter.

Retail sales and household spending are likely to have slipped last month, hurt by adverse weather including two typhoons, but industrial production is expected to have rebounded and consumer inflation is seen ticking higher.

The government on Dec. 8 will also report revised gross domestic product figures for the July-September quarter.

The world’s third-largest economy expanded at a 1.4 percent annualised rate during the period, preliminary data showed two weeks ago, after growing 2.6 percent in the prior quarter.

Reporting by Chris Gallagher; Editing by Kim Coghill

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